Last year wasn’t a cosplay-year for me, but I still managed to get one Cosplay done and visit the two classic conventions, namely the Japantag (Japanday) and DoKomi. Both take place in Düsseldorf every year and are my go-to conventions because I can sleep in my father’s flat, so no costs for accomodation hehe
As always accompanied by my one and only best cosplay partner/bro/soulmate who makes every convention a pleasure to visit if she’s not wearing uncomfortable clothes…
We had been toying with the idea of cosplaying these characters from Tamen de Gushi (Their Story in English) for a while, a Manhua (Chinese Comic, like a Manga) that we both hold very dear. It’s about a love story between two girls, Sun Jing and Qiu Tong, and their daily lives. I highly recommend reading it, it’s super sweet but also very funny.
Thanks to the school setting the costume itself is extremely simple, we only had to sew the (bow)ties and the pleated skirts, the rest was bought (Gasp! I never buy clothes for cosplay but honestly it would be ridiculous to sew a white blouse or knit a slipover).
Unbelievable that this is the first school uniform cosplay I’ve ever done! On the bright side, it’s comfortable like no other costume and easy to put on which makes the whole convention day a lot more relaxed.
However, there are also downsides I never thought about before… THE CREEPS.
It seems that school uniform cosplays attract a certain kind of people I’d rather not be bothered by. Which led to the following Instagram caption:
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Japantag 2017: When the 'Failed attempt at flirting/creep' counter is higher than the 'Someone recognized your cosplay' counter 😭 Photo by @ann_a_malie #sunset #photography #cosplayshoot #cosplay #japantag #japantag2017 #jday #düsseldorf #rhein #tamendegushi #theirstory #manhua #shoujoai #sunjing #qiutong
Japantag clearly holds the record for the weirdest encounters. I won’t write about everything we had to experience but the 3rd guy was just too hilarious to not document here.
He was honestly quite funny but annoying. We were trying to take some photos at the Rhine Promenade when he walked up to us and asked for a photo with us (which is a normal thing to do at cons, it’s kind of a way to say I like your costume). So of course we said yes since he was a nice guy, although a little hyper, most likely drunk. However, he kept coming back to photobomb us and got in the way. It was entertaining at first, after some time less. He wanted to know where we came from so I said not from here, we drove 2,5 hours to get here. His reply: ‘But we can still meet’ while trying to hug me/dance with me. In that moment my inner alarm went off and I finally realized his intentions. I carefully tried to tell him that I was not interested in a relationship after which he got really whiny and kept trying make us pity him, saying things like ‘Is it because I’m ugly”, “Can’t you see how much you hurt my feelings” and other things along these lines. At some point he apparently realized that this strategy didn’t work on us and changed it his approach. This led to the following conversation I will never forget:
“Do you like Anime?”
“Do you like K-Pop?”
“Am I K-Pop?”
Me enjoying Anime and K-Pop doesn’t mean that I jump on every Asian person I see. Asia-fetish sadly is a thing in this community but I was shocked to see this guy trying to actually use it in his favour. Isn’t he basically objectifying himself? Granted, he was most likely drunk but not to the point of incoherency.
Experiences like this make me question the future a lot, especially since the international K-Pop community is steadily growing and I don’t see any reason for the Hallyu-wave to die out in the next few years. Is the fixation on other cultures making us blindly fetishize East-Asians? Is this racism?
Luckily I’ve been seeing an increasing amout of woke fans on the internet and I really hope that this spreads and drowns out the toxic fan-culture.